Dominican Republic

República Dominicana
  • Brian Hunter
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


HISTORY. On 5 Dec. 1492 Columbus discovered the island of Santo Domingo, which he called La Española; for a time it was called Hispaniola. The city of Santo Domingo, founded by his brother, Bartholomew, in 1496, is the oldest city in the Americas. The western third of the island—now the Republic of Haiti—was later occupied and colonized by the French, to whom the Spanish colony of Santo Domingo was also ceded in 1795. In 1808 the Dominican population, under the command of Gen. Juan Sánchez Ramirez, routed an important French military force commanded by Gen. Ferrand, at the famous battle of Palo Hincado. This battle was the beginning of the end for French rule in Santo Domingo and culminated in the successful siege of the capital. Eventually, with the aid of a British naval squadron, the French were forced to capitulate and the colony returned again to Spanish rule, from which it declared its independence in 1821. It was invaded and held by the Haitians from 1822 to 1844, when they were expelled, and the Dominican Republic was founded and a constitution adopted. Independence day 27 Feb. 1844. Great Britain, in 1850, was the first country to recognize the Dominican Republic. The country was occupied by American Marines from 1916 until 1924. In 1936 the name of the capital city was changed from Santo Domingo to Ciudad Trujillo; and back again in 1961.


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Further Reading

  1. Anuario estadístico de la República Dominicana, 1944–45. Ciudad Trujillo. 1949. This has been succeeded by separate annual reports covering foreign trade, vital statistics, banking,insurance, housing and communications.Google Scholar
  2. Official Guide to the Dominican Republic, 79–80. Tourist Information Center, Santo Domingo, 1980Google Scholar
  3. Atkins, G. P., Arms and Politics in the Dominican Republic. London, 1981Google Scholar
  4. Bell, I., The Dominican Republic. London, 1980Google Scholar
  5. Black, J. K., The Dominican Republic: Politics and Development in an Unsovereign State. London, 1986Google Scholar
  6. Diederich, B., Trujillo: The Death of the Goat. London, 1978Google Scholar
  7. Schoenhals, K., Dominican Republic [Bibliography]. London and Santa Barbara, 1990Google Scholar
  8. Wiarda, H. J. and Kryzanek, M. J., The Dominican Republic: A Caribbean Crucible. Boulder, 1982Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brian Hunter

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